Well, that wasn’t a good start.
Battle Mountain and Eagle Valley basketball went 0-for-4 in their conference openers. (The Devils got crunched at Glenwood Springs, while Palisade took the Huskies’ lunch money.)
And it’s important to remmber that this is just a start. No one is going 14-0 in conference play. Chill out. First, my bet is 12-2 (at a maximum) wins the league, probably more like 11-3. Second, you play everyone twice, if not three times with the conference tournament. If the Devils or Huskies both start 0-4 — which is impossible because the two schools get together on Tuesday in Gypsum — then we panic.
Other news and notes as we return to preps:
• Battle Mountain football is 2A. Thank you, higher power. The Huskies will officially play on the 2A Northwest League — Aspen, Coal Ridge, Roaring Fork, Basalt and Moffat County. Nonconference games, so far, include Middle Park, Eagle Valley and Steamboat Springs. Battle Mountain is trying to nail down a 10th game outside of conference.
• Not news, but worth noting: Huskies football coach Steve Greve will not be back. Let’s make one thing clear. Battle Mountain’s 0-20 the last two years is not all on him. Huskies football the last two seasons has been insitutional failure on so many levels — players, coaches, lack of tradition, culture and so on. Vince Lombardi and/or Bill Walsh could have come back from the dead and maybe led the Huskies to a 2-18 record during the last two years. Whoever gets this job will still have his work cut out for him.
• Vail Christian football’s move to the I-25 is sort of good news/bad news. It’s not going to be as tough of a conference as the Slope, which makes the path to the playoffs easier. On the other hand, I really liked the Slope. When you have the guys playing each other in both football and basketball when it came to Vail Christian, West Grand, Soroco, Hayden and Rangely, there was some serious spark. Maybe in two years the deck will be shuffled.
• Eagle Valley football is staying put. We’re pretty sure that coach John Ramunno is darn happy that the Devils don’t have to travel to Cortez or Craig during the next two years and that one of those trips is now to Summit County.
• Huskies hockey is 1-1 to start the year. Catch the team against Bishop Machebeuf tonight at 7:30 down at Eagle. Then watch them at Dobson on Saturday against Aspen. By the way nice win over Summit. Learn from the Steamboat Springs loss and finish out games.
• A big shoutout to Eagle Valley wrestling. That was good stuff against Palisade. That was the most exciting dual I’ve been to in years. I really thought Chris Comroe was dead to rights. Good job, kid. Meanwhile, that was just a bad break for Rafa (Rafael Gurule). Keep wrestling like that. I also think Rafa’s the favorite if the wrestling team ever holds a 5K.
• Team that should be on your radar: Vail Christian boys basketball. The Saints will be in the mix by the time league starts on Jan. 22 at Soroco. The Saints are at North Park today and then head home for Jim Elliot at 4 and 5:30 p.m.
• And we can all blame Ascher Robbins for the Broncos’ loss. The Battle Mountain alum didn’t put on his Peyton Manning jersey until the third quarter.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 and firstname.lastname@example.org.